The end goal for most college students is to find a position within their discipline. St. Cloud State University (SCSU) offers a wide variety of services which aid students in finding employment in their designated fields after graduation. The Career Service Center (CSC) is a destination on campus that offers many of these services. The CSC offers a range of standard appointments which include resume help, major advice, and other services. They are also responsible for organizing Career Fairs on campus, setting up Mock Interviews with employers, hosting Feedback Fridays, and most importantly, arranging real interviews called Campus Interviews. They also offer a service called Classroom Presentations, where a representative from the CSC talks to a class about the Career Center and the services they offer. This assessment relates CSC services to graduates’ success in achieving employment in their field. The research is based on two years of cohort data.
The CSC sends out a survey to all students after they graduate. The survey asks students if they have a job, if the job is related to their field of study, and if the student is seeking new employment or is satisfied with where they are. Approximately 86% of graduates from SCSU reply to the survey. The CSC also has information on all students’ history with the CSC. Over a student’s SCSU career, information is tracked on their visits to the CSC. This study analyzes if the number of visits impacted finding a job, as reflected in the survey responses. Further analysis considers whether certain CSC services were particularly effective in aiding students post-graduation. Additionally, the CSC wanted to know if response time to their survey yielded different results. Some students reply to the survey soon after graduation; however, a majority of the students respond up to a year after graduation. The CSC expected that the effect of their services would mostly be seen within the first five months after graduation. This is because after a year goes by, students have sufficient time to find a job through other efforts, and the effect of the CSC’s services is not seen as clearly.
For the CSC, this research is effective in assessing their impact on SCSU students. The key insights of this project are as follows:
- Students using CSC services have higher post-graduation job satisfaction rates than non-users.
- Campus Interviewing was statistically significant in contributing to employment satisfaction after graduation.
- Classroom Presentations were very effective in increasing attendance at the CSC for other services.
- Students responding to the survey earlier tended to be those who were employed, and had used the CSC. Students who responded past a year showed larger still-seeking rates than those who responded within 10 months.
- A logistic regression model showed Campus Interviewing to have the largest effect on post-graduation job satisfaction.
Jackson, Aaron, "Career Center Efficiency: How is Student Success Affected?" (2018). SCSU Data. 13.